Mercedes-benz E Class Cabriolet

Review Of The Mercedes-Benz E Class Cabriolet

Road trip anyone? The new Mercedes-Benz E Class Cabriolet is a hot-shot, four-seater drop-top that boasts excellent comfort, a range of powerful engines and more sex appeal than you’ll find on a Californian beach.

The best thing? Prices start out from just £44,675. And while you can’t put a price on happiness, we reckon that comes pretty close. All you need is some friends and a destination.

OSV takes a closer look at what it’s all about with our 2017 Mercedes-Benz E Class Cabriolet review.

On The Road

The ultimate road trip car needs to have the right attributes, such as smooth responses, supreme levels of comfort so that no one feels fatigued after a long journey, and excellent road manners. The E-Class Cabriolet has it all.

That said, it won’t be to everyone’s taste, simply because, despite its cornering talent, it doesn’t engage you quite as much as a BMW does. That’s a shame, but we doubt it will be a major deal-breaker for most buyers who want to chill and soak up some summer vibes.

Purple Mercedes E Class Cabriolet driving on mountain road

In terms of the engines, the entry-level E220d diesel model kicks off with a 2.0-litre diesel engine that delivers up to 191bhp. It’s a good replacement for the coarser 2.1-litre diesel that’s been dispensed with – in fact, it’s so good that Mercedes have added it to a number of their models. We like it; it’s quiet, does 0-62 in a respectable 7.7 seconds, and you don’t have to work it too hard at all.

The E350d model tops the diesel range. It’s powered by a V6 3.0-litre engine that comes with four-wheel drive and can do 0-62 in 6.1 seconds. Top speed is 155mph, but while this is clearly an exciting engine, it’s also pricey.

The petrol range mirrors the diesel range. An E300 model opens with a 2.0-litre petrol engine that produces 248bhp and does 0-62 in 6.6 seconds.

That’s a smart time that will be enough for you all to feel the breeze in your hair, but the bigger E400 model with its twin-turbocharged V6 3.0-litre engine ups the ante. It delivers 328bhp, comes with four-wheel-drive, and does 0-62 in 5.5 seconds without any fuss.

Interior, Design & Build

The interior has been beautifully executed, with the leather and wood trim just two highlights. Buyers will love the metal air vents, as well as the soft-touch plastics. And while you might be thinking that wood is a bit dated now, it works well here.

Other highlights include the seatbelt’s, which have a sort-of “come out to meet you” feature, ambient lighting, as well as the AirCap wind deflector. The retractable flap is also worth mentioning. It looks a tad awkward, but it does a great job of keeping you warm in colder weather. Meanwhile, the dashboard comes with a pair of 12.3” screens if you opt for the COMAND online system.

Grey leather interior of Mercedes Benz E Class Cabriolet

The fabric roof is at the cutting edge of design, and benefits from acoustic tuning that helps to keep the car quiet, no matter where you are or what speed you’re flying around at.

For the best levels of comfort, we recommend paying extra for the air suspension. It’s money well spent. If you’re on a budget, you could stick to the smaller alloys and save money that way.

Overall, the build quality is a lot better than last time around, and the interior feels genuinely upmarket. In fact, the quality is almost on par with the S-Class Cabriolet, a car that costs almost three times as much to buy.

It was never going to be a super practical car, but there is plenty of backseat room. This is a four-seater that actually has a good amount of space for four people, and no one should get cramped on longer journeys. It’s longer and wider than last time, with our only compliant being the upright seats.

The boot, meanwhile, measures 385-litres with the roof up.

Equipment & Safety

Standard kit across the range is good, and includes heated front seats, ambient lighting, LED headlights, and the brand’s Magic Vision Control.

However, to get the best out of the entry-level model, you might need to dip into the options list. We recommend adding air suspension, while the COMAND online infotainment system – which not a necessity – will make your life easier.

Euro NCAP hasn’t yet crash-tested the car, so we can’t make an accurate judgment regarding its safety. But it’s based on the Saloon, which landed all five stars when it was assessed. Moreover, Mercedes generally produce reassuringly safe cars.

Costs Of The Mercedes-Benz E Class Cabriolet

Prices for the new car start out from £44,675 and rise to £55,910. If you want to lease the car, you can pick up a deal from as little as £460 + VAT per month. For more information on our leasing deals, you can check out our page here.

In terms of its running costs, it would have been a massive thorn in the car’s otherwise golden side if it returned poor economy. It doesn’t. Sure, the most frugal engine is the entry-level E220d diesel engine, but this is a highly competent unit that returns 52mpg and emits just 126g/km of CO2. It’s powerful and affordable.

The smoother E350d V6 diesel model is more expensive to keep on the road, but returns of 41.5mpg economy are still impressive. The 2.0-litre E300 petrol model fares only slightly worse, returning 39.2mpg. The 3.0-litre, four-wheel-drive V6 petrol engine, meanwhile, returns just shy of 33mpg while emitting 194g/km.

Pros And Cons Of The Mercedes-Benz E Class Cabriolet

Pros:

Four Seat Heaven

Finally, a four-seater drop-top that actually offers comfort for all four people. Heaven!

Affordable To Run

It’s the ultimate road trip machine for 2017, so it was important that it was affordable to run. Its cheapest (but still powerful) diesel engine can return over 52mpg.

Stylish

If looks alone could sell, Mercedes would have to ramp up production.

Cons:

Dull Handling

Mercedes have prioritised comfort over exceptional handling, so keener drivers will lose out.

Expensive Options

Not that you’ll need them all, but pimping your E-Class up will cost a fair bit.

Interested in the Mercedes-Benz E Class Cabriolet? Let's explore how Mercedes has become one of the biggest vehicle manufacturers in the world

Mercedes-Benz E Class Cabriolet vs BMW 640 Cabriolet vs Audi S5 Cabriolet

Let’s see how the car fares against its rivals in the comparison section of our 2017 Mercedes-Benz E Class Cabriolet review.

Mercedes-Benz E Class Cabriolet vs BMW 640 Cabriolet

The new BMW 640 Cabriolet looks a bit like a gimmick – but rest assured, this is a serious drop-top that will always put the sunshine on your face.

It oozes sex appeal and scintillating performance. This 640i model is the darling of the 6 Series range, with power coming from a twin-turbocharged 4.4-litre eight-pot engine that develops 320bhp and which can do 0-62 in just 5.5 seconds. It’s a strong and engaging engine that compliments the rewarding nature of the car.

Blue BMW 6 series convertible

It’s paired up with a slick 8-speed automatic transmission that shifts effortlessly. There are three driving modes to choose from, starting with Normal and ending with the racy Sport+.

However, to get the very best out of it, we recommend adding the Adaptive Drive system. It lets you modify the gearbox, traction control, steering, engine and even suspension to improve driving dynamics.

Ultimate driving machine, then? Maybe ultimate road trip machine. There is literally zero body roll, plenty of grip, and the suspension ensures the ride quality is good.

Running costs are okay – could be better, but could also be worse. On average, you could return 31.7mpg economy from the 640i model, which might be a deal breaker for some buyers. Your yearly tax bill, meanwhile, will be a tenner short of £300. Servicing is on the expensive side, too, with its large tyres costing more cash than your average ones.

Still, it’s all about the experience with a car such as the BMW 640 Cabriolet, and with an excellent cabin and superb drivability, the experience is barely matched elsewhere. Indeed, the interior is spacious, comfortable, and there is quality everywhere. The leather seats are a highlight and are available across the whole range.

Practicality won’t be too much of an issue. No one expects a Cabriolet to be super useful, so a 350-litre boot is certainly a big plus. That’s enough to hold a few small suitcases or some golf clubs.

However, there isn’t much room in the rear. It’s billed as a four-seater, but the Mercedes offers more leg and headroom to all your passengers, making it more ideal if you’ll be travelling long distances will all the seats vacated.

Price:

Mercedes – £44,675 – £55,910

BMW – £67,000 – £79,900

Mercedes-Benz E Class Cabriolet vs Audi S5 Cabriolet

The new Audi S5 Cabriolet is a scintillating proposition. It’s fast, sexy and boasts a typically high-quality interior from the brand.

On the attack, it’s a live-wire that lives on the edge. Keener drivers will prefer the V8 3.0-litre turbo petrol engine, with its six cylinders, 349bhp and a 0-62 time of 5.1 seconds.

Blue Audi S5 Cabriolet

However, we think the V6 3.0-litre diesel engine is the smarter choice. It’s an excellent all-rounder that’s tuneful, composed, smooth and torquey. It also hosts decent running costs that top 40mpg. Conversely, the petrol engine struggles to return 36mpg on a good day, while it emits 177g/km of CO2.

Moreover, since the suspension is more soft than stiff, the diesel suits the car’s character better. As fast as it is, we wouldn’t say that it’s an out-and-out sports car – it’s more of a cruiser.

Both models aren’t quite as sharp to drive as the S5 Coupe, but sitting on the brand’s latest MLB Evo platform and weighing less than last time means that it’s almost 50% stiffer than its predecessor – according to Audi, at least. As we said, the suspension feels soft for the most part.

The addition of the roof means it’s still a weighty old thing, and this does hamper performance. That said, the petrol engine is faster than anything the Mercedes can offer, which is a testament to Audi’s skills.

Take the roof down and it doesn’t matter which engine you’ve chosen, as both sound gloriously on song. They pop, cackle, fizz and boom with drama. And it’s this sense of drama, coupled with the electrifying speed of the V8 petrol engine, that may just persuade you to opt for the Audi S5 Cabriolet over the E-Class drop-top.

Taking the roof down takes only a matter of seconds, and it can be operated at speeds just over 30mph. The interior is smart, well-appointed, and boasts top-notch build quality. Four adults get treated to a good amount of space, but there isn’t all that much inside here to distinguish this car from the £15,000 cheaper Audi A5. And maybe that will swing you back in favour of the Mercedes.

Price:

Audi – £51,385 +

Verdict Of Our 2017 Mercedes-Benz E Class Cabriolet Review

This sleek convertible is manna from heaven, especially if you’re planning a few trips with friends or family. It’s a drop-top, it’s got four very comfortable seats, the cheapest diesel to run can return over 50mpg, and it’s full of power, verve and sex appeal. The new Mercedes-Benz E-Class Cabriolet is everyone’s type.

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